Ever wondered what happens if someone breaks into your car or if it catches fire? Would your personal belongings be covered by your current motor insurance policy? If not, it’s not too late to go back and review the terms and conditions of the policy. Anything in your car such as wallet, mobile phones, personal/work laptop or even your vehicles music system can be significant in value.

What happens in case of theft, fire or accident?

Car robberies aren’t as common in UAE compared to fire and road accidents. According to Ahmad Mohammad Ahmad, Head of the Forensics Science and Criminology of Dubai Police, one out of three fire incidents are related to car fires. Also, in the first seven months of 2015, about 186 car fire incidents were reported. Therefore, it’s important to check if your insurance company covers personal belongings in case of a fire, theft or road accident. Items which you may want insured include wallet, money, sunglasses, laptops, wrist watch and electronic gadgets.

The good news is that majority of comprehensive motor insurance providers in UAE do cover personal belongings. Examples include, RSA which covers loss and damage to personal possession in or on your car up to AED 4,000. HSBC provides personal belongings cover under comprehensive policy up to AED 6,000. Oman Insurance Company provides cover for loss or damage to your belongings in your car due to theft, fire or accident with a maximum payable amount up to AED 5,000. AXA insurance policy covers any loss/damage to your personal property due to fire, theft or accident up to AED 4,000.

[Related: The little extras that come with your car insurance policyWhat to remember when buying your UAE car insurance]

When can I not make a claim?

Motor insurance providers will compensate for your personal belongings but they also have exceptions where the claims cannot be made. Exceptions could include:

  • Any loss of personal belongings from a convertible vehicle unless kept in the trunk or the glove compartment.
  • Loss or damage of belongings which is not caused from forced entry into the vehicle.
  • Money, jewelry, stamps, documents, bonds, vouchers, lottery tickets, scratch cards, raffle ticket, air miles are excluded.
  • If belongings in the car are insured under any other insurance policy.
  • Samples or goods carried in the car for trading purpose.

The insurance providers will compensate for your loss upon submission of necessary documents such as police report (in some cases), driving licence, vehicle registration card and details of your stolen property (proof of your personal belongings may be required). Also, the insurance providers will take wear and tear of your belonging into account before settling the claim.